Over fifty times, Industry Magazine diverse Calculated, the ominous “explosion” can be heard in this film, which attacks Jessica every day. At first I woke up from him, walking into the night room and looking out the window. Outside, a parking lot of dozens of cars, their headlights begin to flash in fright, the security systems light up, and the calm slowly returns. Nobody hears Jessica’s hype, just as viewers, privilege, insecurity, and stigma. W: pure suspense.
Tilda Swinton is Jessica, and she has known director Apichatpong Weerasethakul for many years. “Memoria” is his first film, which was filmed not in his homeland Thailand, but in Colombia, in Bogota. I hope, says Swinton, there will soon be a Scottish Weerasethakul. The director received the Jury Prize for “Memoria” in Cannes in 2021 – for “Uncle Boonmee Remembers His Past Life” there was the Palme d’Or in 2010.
The heroine suffers from exploding head syndrome, which the director also suffered
Jessica’s bang is a voice out of nowhere, with no origin, referring to our unsure attempts to crack the mystery of the Apichatpong Weerasethakul films, which are both synthetic and natural at the same time. He himself suffered from a disorder of such intractable outbursts, Exploding Head Syndrome (EHS), which is more of a nuisance than a painful pathology. They are repetitive sounds inside the head, and they often occur between sleep and wakefulness when consciousness is least protected.
Jessica wants to do something about the mysterious phenomenon and visits the sound engineer in his studio, young Hernan, who, according to her descriptions, artificially recreates the sound with his equipment. She explains to him: “It’s like a huge ball, made of cement, that falls into a metal well surrounded by sea water.” Visualization as a form of poetry. What is the size of a cement ball? Jessica separates her hands to highlight the blow from her mouth. “Then it shrinks…” She struggles to get foreign Spanish words out of herself, and sometimes has to switch to English. Poetry for which the whole body plays together. Hernan shows off her various vocal variations, as she listens. more tiaraShe demands, “It should sound more earthy, like a rumble from the heart of the earth.” Now he’s showing her a library of cinematic sound effects on his computer, all of which have an exact name and are pretty silly: “body meets quilt meets bat.”
Imagination is absolute, it has been the motto of cinema since the beginning. Only the audio comes in the description, so a visit to the recording studio is reminiscent of the practice of psychoanalysis, where dreams and their content are formed only in associative and moving descriptions. The psychoanalytic style also has a lot to do with poetry, language does not serve the purpose of naming anything exactly.
Bogota is a bustling city, and most of the shots here are full of people speeding through the frame. The settings are inspired, says Apichatpong Weerasethakul, by Colombian painter Ever Astudillo, as it combines people and space. Jessica visits an exhibition of his paintings.
As always with Apichatpong Weerasethakul, the movie takes a completely different direction after an hour. A scientist, played by Jane Ballbar, told Jessica that 6000-year-old human remains were found during a tunneling project through the Andes. So Jessica goes to the countryside, and at the river she meets a man also known as Hernan who peels fish. I can’t forget, he says, my memory is full, so he doesn’t watch anything anymore, no movies, no TV. He does not even dare to dream, when he sleeps he lies there like a dead man. Time stands still.
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Perhaps my most Buddhist film, says Weerasethakul, with the juxtaposition of space and emptiness. It is about subjectivity, in its most subtle form, without one becoming an object. Memories jump from one to the other. Jessica Holland, that’s the name of the young woman in the fantastic fictitious “I Walked with a Zombie” by Jack Tourneur – the director is very important to Wierasethakul. Attracted to the sound of voodoo drums on a Caribbean island, Jessica falls in love with the cult. “I think my Jessica, like Tourneurs, doesn’t really exist, she has a surreal dimension that only cinema can offer…it’s cinema.”
memory, 2021 – Director, Screenplay: Apichatpong Weerasethakul. Camera: Sayombo Mukdebrom. Editor: Lee Chatametikool. Music: Cesar Lopez. Starring: Tilda Swinton, Agnes Brikki. Port au Prince 136 minutes. Theatrical release on May 5, 2022.